As the continuing crisis unleashed by the banking collapse continues to work itself out racism is on the rise in many European countries and beyond.
Nigel Farage of UKIP (aka the ‘pound shop
Enoch Powell’) from his comments this week is clearly looking for racist votes
in the General election and to stoke up racism by scapegoating migrants.
Farage as a former commodity trader is one of
those who has contributed to the banking crisis but is now trying to put the
blame on migrants.
As a result of our campaigns in the labour
and trade union movement against racism in the past we have made progress and
made gains but there is clearly still inequality in society – witness the
higher rate of unemployment of young black people with the same qualifications
and the fact that women still get less pay than men.
Farage wants to take us backwards to the days
when ‘No blacks, no dogs, no Irish’ signs were displayed. We therefore have to
protect the progress we have made.
The trade union movement as a bulwark to the
prevailing ideas in society (i.e. those of the ruling class) is vital to the
fight against racism. The issue of racism will be important in the General Election.
We should be cautious of those who have an interest in scaring working class
people and distracting them from austerity. Wages are historically low because
of government policy over many years – this is not the fault of migrants. All
workers are victims of these global market forces – the solution is stronger
collective bargaining and unionisation.
This needs to be one of the issues addressed
at the UNISON National Delegate Conference this June.
As an important next step UNISON and the
other Trade Unions are supporting the major demonstration against racism next
week in London on Saturday 21st March 2015. This needs to be as big a
demonstration as we can make it.
Transport details to demo: http://www.standuptoracism.org.uk/coaches/